Several years ago my dear friend Dave was kind enough to oblige me in my quest for photos I could use on my ‘about’ page of my website. He took several shots of me with his beloved mastiff Besa at the Pike Place Market. I loved those photos and I loved that dog.
Sadly, Besa passed away over a year ago from a rapid and severe case of bloat. She was one of the most special dogs I have ever known, and it still pains me to think about her being gone.
In that time life has changed a lot and my dog Fergie came into my life.
I felt that it was appropriate that I have some photos taken of the two of us since after all she is my dog.
So last week on the most sunny day of the week we went to the arboretum in Seattle. Our trip was multipurpose: #1- relax in the sun and try and refill our depleted stores of vitamin D, let Fergie get some fresh air and play and (hopefully) swim in Lake Washington, and #3- get photos of the two of us.
Since I didn’t really want our outing to be all about business, and really wanted some relaxing time, I decided it would be just the two of us (no friend to snap the photos).
I should know my dog well enough by now to know that the only part of the above scenario that was possible was #2.
We were there for about 2 hours, and I swear, after our 30-minute ‘hike’ out to the water, and after she swam in the lake for an hour (he first real swim of the season), and ran around investigating bushes, leaves, other dogs and people, she STILL had the zoomies so bad she literally couldn’t sit or stand still. She was running around with her butt tucked and her tongue wagging, crazy-eyed, like a dog who had never been outside before.
Needless to say, this made relaxing in the sun and getting photos, challenging at best. Let’s just say that by the time we were done I think I had said something to Fergie like: “that’s it! you are going back to the pound! I should have gotten a different dog!”
Now, mind you, I absolutely adore my dog, and we are together 24-7: she goes pretty much everywhere with me, and even sleeps under the covers every night, but sometimes I just want to take her to a park and leave her there.
I suppose everyone out there with human children can relate. Sometimes you just want them to go away, lol.
BUT, the good news is that out of the 100+ shots I took of the two of us, I did get 1 decent one. It needed some editing but overall I was/am pretty satisfied.
Below you will see the new photo that will go up on my profile and ‘about’ page, and following it are the ‘behind the scenes’ photos from our self-portrait shoot.
Now I know if I ever want to go to the Arboretum or anywhere else for that matter, and relax, the pup stays home. 🙂
Here is the original ‘profile’ shot with Besa:
And here is the winning shot of Fergie and I:
Ironically this shot was taken at the very end of the shoot, when I was seconds away from throwing in the towel. I guess I just really wanted to get a decent shot of my pup and I, and decided to just let go of the tension in the last few shots.
I think I was thinking: “I can’t have a self-portrait of me and a friend’s dog on my website forever.” People always assumed I had a mastiff, and I had to explain each time about Besa, and that she is no longer with us, which is always a terribly sad thing to think about. It fills me with joy to talk about Fergie, as, all of my complaints in this post aside, she is a really great dog. A bit wild and crazy, but also funny, affectionate, sensitive, sharp as a tack and very goofy. If she were a human guy I’d marry her. 🙂
And lastly, here are some ‘behind the scenes’ shots from our Arboretum shoot, and my comments on each.
You can’t really tell but in image #2 I am starting to get annoyed at my darling dog. She was all about treats and play and not about work at all. I suppose if you look at the surroundings you can’t really blame her. The Arboretum is gorgeous at this time of year.
See how tight her leash is in image #3? That’s because I am pulling on her hard trying to get her to cooperate. The mild look on my face betrays the total lack of patience I am feeling inside. I only get impatient when shooting my own dog.
Image #4- I am still annoyed because she is eating grass and I can’t get the lens up enough to clear the grass and focus on her….sigh…
I thought we had a winner with image #5, with both of us looking in the same direction. It wasn’t until I got home that I realized that Ms. Fergs’ eyes were closed……… another sigh…
Image #6 needs no explanation- I was fed up by that point. I think this was right before I said that if she didn’t cooperate I was leaving her there.
And lastly, the runner-up, which I would have used had it not looked like I was about to start crying from the bright sun. 🙂
So the next time you want to take a self-portrait of you and your dog, think about my experience and remember it can be done! 🙂